'Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III' will include the series' biggest zombies map ever

The sequel will debut with modernized versions of every original 'Modern Warfare 2' (2009) multiplayer map.

Sledgehammer Games/Treyarch/Actvision

Activision has spilled the beans about Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III, revealing much more about what players can expect from the next entry in the rebooted series. For one thing, it seems like fans of Call of Duty's Zombies mode are in for a treat. Activision is promising the mode's biggest map to date. You'll be able to team up with other squads for the first time and try to survive "massive hordes" of zombies.

Although Sledgehammer Games is leading development on Modern Warfare III, a bunch of other Activision studios are lending a hand. Treyarch, one of the core Call of Duty developers, handled this year's Zombies mode, which tells a "Dark Aether" story. Along with secrets to unearth and a variety of missions to check out, Zombies includes "an open-world PvE extraction survival experience" and some of the biggest enemies in the franchise's history, Activision said.

Zombies is not the only major multiplayer mode, of course, and MWIII will pay tribute to one of the series' high points. Every one of the original 16 multiplayer maps from the 2009 version of Modern Warfare 2 will be available at the outset. Sledgehammer has modernized classic maps like Terminal and Highrise with new modes and gameplay features. More than 12 new six vs. six maps will arrive in future seasons.

From the jump, there will be three new Battle Maps on which you'll duke it out in the Ground War and Invasion modes, along with a War map. The latter marks the return of the War Mode that made its series bow in 2017's Call of Duty: WWll.

Soldiers take cover behind a shield in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III's multiplayer mode.
Sledgehammer Games/Actvision

You can expect fresh movement mechanics, such as a Tac-Stance for tactical close-quarters combat. Activision says Sledgehammer has refined the reload cancel and slide cancel mechanics, while you should find it faster to aim down sights out of slide. Meanwhile, all perks will be available at the beginning of a multiplayer match, including a new silent movement one called Covert Sneakers.

Many players will be pleased to learn that the classic red-dot minimap is back after Infinity Ward omitted it from last year's Modern Warfare II. There will be a map voting system, while Sledgehammer has given players a health boost, which will increase the time-to-kill — I'm sure players will have no opinions whatsoever about that change.

You won't necessarily have to start over your collection of multiplayer gear from scratch. Last week, Activision confirmed that, for the first time, players will be able to carry forward nearly all of their unlocked items (including weapons and operators) from Modern Warfare II to Modern Warfare III.

A soldier walks through some woods in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III's campaign mode.
Sledgehammer Games/Actvision

On top of all of the multiplayer features, there's the small matter of the campaign. This is a direct sequel to last year's game and it continues the Modern Warfare story with Task Force 141 looking to take down ultranationalist villain Vladmir Makarov. This time around, there's a new type of mission called Open Combat. This offers players the chance to choose their own path through a level and they'll have multiple ways to complete objectives. These levels were built to work around players' preferred play styles, so if you prefer a stealthy approach to an all-guns-blazing one, you might appreciate their flexibility.

Activision has also released a new gameplay trailer, which backs up speculation that there will be a fresh take on the controversial No Russian mission from the original Modern Warfare 2. The phrase "No Russian" appears in a text message before the recipient points a gun while walking through a plane.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III will hit PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S and PC (via Steam and on November 10th. There will be a free open beta beforehand, with those who pre-order getting early access. Those folks will also be able to play the campaign up to a week before the game's official release date.